Dogs Beg the Question: Is There Training Available for our Human Friends?
By Gary Allison
The focus of many pet owners seems to be directed towards their animals, which makes a great deal of sense in most cases. However, when trying to correct unwanted behavior in your dog you might want to point that finger inward sometimes and have a little glimpse in the mirror. It is easy to become annoyed with your pet when you feel as though you have tried everything and nothing seems to work. Maybe your Boston Terrier continues to chew on your shoes or other objects while you are not at home. Perhaps the Maltese in your life still has accidents in the house rather than letting you know she needs to go outside. On the other hand, possibly you have a Yorkshire Terrier that snips at strangers, even guests in your home when they try to pet him. All of these and many other undesirable behaviors that dogs may posses can leave a pet owner feeling frustrated and at their wits end with their furry little friend.
Have you ever considered though when faced with one of these situations that the dog is trying to communicate something to you? Is it possible that Sparky just feels neglected during those long days alone at home while you are at work? Sometimes we can have a big impact on our dogs if we look at our own behavior and consider what the pooch may be trying to tell us through their difficult behavior. Obviously dogs can not talk or speak with us as a human can when they need to communicate their feelings. That is not to say that canines are not vocal because as many of us know they can express quite a lot at times through their barking, growling or whining. However, to really pinpoint what the issue is for your pet you may find that you are the one that actually holds the answers.
Dogs have a very keen awareness for their surroundings and the people in their environment. As most dog owners come to realize, the bond between your dog and you can be extremely strong. There are people who report that during a challenging illness or devastating time in their life that their dog responded as though they knew what was going on and they helped their owner through the rough time. Sometimes by just sitting near their owner or laying at their feet, other times dogs may whine and pace back and forth, especially when other people are around because they are trying to indicate that their owner needs help.
Experts have even confirmed that dogs do have an ability to detect several human emotions and many of them will respond in unique ways. For example; when there is a lot of anger or arguing occurring within a household your dog may respond by acting up in a number of ways, which is not a problem with the dog but rather your pet is responding to the hostility and unpleasantness it senses in the house. Everyone goes through difficult periods in their life and it is obviously impossible to avoid exposing your dog to any anger or hostile situations throughout their life. The important thing to remember is that your situation and how you handle it is not your dogâ€™s choice or within their area of responsibility.
Dogs deserve and hopefully get, the majority of times anyway, a good, loving and stable home. They respond well to a structured environment, complete with rules and routines. If you typically get up each morning and walk your dog before you go to work and then you suddenly stop doing it all together, your dog will respond in some way, possibly a negative one. It is not the dogâ€™s fault that you changed your behavior and they have no other way of communicating other than to chew up stuff or have an accident in the house as their way of saying, â€œhey what is going on.â€ In some cases dogs can even become depressed, this happens most frequently in situations where the dog was once loved and well cared for and then suddenly became ignored and forgotten about. It is really sad to see a dog that is in this form of doggy-depression because again, they did not ask to come to live with you, you chose them.
There are obviously other concerns you must deal with when you are going through a difficult time, like loosing your job or going through a divorce, and you should always take care of the important aspects related to these situations. It is understandable that a dog can suddenly become a lower priority in your life however, if you are unhappy with their behavior because they are acting out in response to their environment; take that into consideration before disciplining your pet or giving up on them all together.
Dogs may secretly harbor the desire to have all humans attend some sort of training school before they decide to become a pet owner, however, since that is not very likely to happen, remember to think about your own behavior when examining your dogâ€™s. That precious pooch can sometimes be just what you need to get through a difficult time and maintaining their routine for their benefit can in many ways benefit you also.
Gary Allison is a third generation of professional dog breeders. It all started with his grandparents in 1970 with the Boston Terriers and has expanded to Maltese, Yorkshire Terriers, Pugs and Pomeranians. He is also actively involved with dog rescue and has a website that showcases the puppies he has for sale at http://allmypuppiesonline.com.
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